Budget Logjam Needs to Break

ALBANY, 03/24/09 – Senator James L. Seward (R/I/C- Oneonta) commented today on the closed state budget process:

“I am extremely disappointed with the lack of progress on the state budget. Promises of openness and reform by Democrats have come up short, and now we are a week away from the budget deadline with nothing to show to the public.

March 24, 2009

Grants to Improve Upstate Health Care

ALBANY, 03/23/09 - State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today announced that a number of physicians, hospitals, and health care facilities in the 51st district will receive funding under New York State’s Doctors Across New York program.

Under the program $15.6 million in funding is provided to offer loan forgiveness, grants and enhanced reimbursement to encourage new primary care and specialist physicians to practice in underserved areas.

March 23, 2009

Seward and State Pay Tribute to Oneonta Student

ONEONTA, 03/23/09 - State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today presented Oneonta Middle School student Charlotte McKane with a legislative resolution honoring her as a recipient of the 2009 Prudential Spirit of Community Award.

March 23, 2009

The Budget Battle Continues

 The legislative session in Albany continues to move at a snail’s pace, thanks to what has become a major step backward in transparency and openness in the operation of state government.  Budget negotiations have been bottled up in closed door sessions constituting three leaders, all of whom hail from New York City.  All three are also Democrats, and the reason this point is important is because for years Democrats have been demanding more open door meetings, and calling for government reform.  Interestingly enough, when given the opportunity, they are quick to ret

March 20, 2009

Seward Named Great Hero

HERKIMER, 03/19/09 -- Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) was recognized today by the American Red Cross of the Mohawk Valley as a “Great Hero” award winner.

Senator Seward and fellow hero Assemblyman Marc Butler (R/C/I-Herkimer) were honored during the 12th Annual Great Heroes Breakfast held at Herkimer County Community College.

“The Red Cross does so much for the community, helping families and individuals in their hour of need,” said Seward. “The hard-working volunteers that make up the Mohawk Valley chapter are the real heroes.”

Extra Images: 


March 19, 2009

Seward Helps Raise Over $1 Million for Heart Association

UTICA 03/13/09 -- Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) took part in the 38th Annual WIBX Heart Radiothon at Utica College, which helped raise over $1 million for the American Heart Association.

“Heart disease is the number one killer in America claiming 910,000 lives each year,” said Seward. “The American Heart Association’s research, education and advocacy efforts are vital in keeping the death toll from climbing higher. This local fundraising, which included a walk at SUNY Oneonta, shows the true heart of the Mohawk Valley and central New York.”

March 13, 2009

The Value Of A Tune

March may be a tough month at times, winter weather lingers, time is running out to file your taxes, and at the state level, budget negotiations are grinding along.  But March is still music to my ears.

March 13, 2009

Senate Approves New Cortland County Seal

ALBANY, 03/12/09 -- Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) announced today the senate passage of a home rule request allowing Cortland County to update the official county seal.

“With Cortland County just celebrating its bicentennial it is an ideal time to officially update the county seal,” said Seward. “This new seal, which is already commonly recognized and used throughout the county as a logo, will now be used for official county and court documents.”

March 12, 2009

Governor Backs Down on Tax and Fee Hikes

ALBANY, 03/11/09 – Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I- Oneonta) commented today on Governor Paterson’s decision to back down on some tax and fee hikes proposed in his budget.

March 11, 2009

A Better Plan For New York

The clock is ticking, spring is approaching, and as we wipe away the final remnants of winter, progress on a new state budget is unnoticeable.  With so much hanging in the balance this year, it is essential that we complete work on the state spending plan by the April 1st deadline.  That is why I have joined with my fellow senate Republicans in offering a new vision for the state of New York. 

March 6, 2009

Senate Republicans Unveil "A Better Plan for New York"

ALBANY, 03/05/09 – Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) and New York state senate Republicans today offered a comprehensive budget savings plan that spends less than the governor’s budget, rejects $6.2 billion in taxes and fees proposed by Governor Paterson, implements a spending cap to restrain future spending growth and helps businesses create jobs to strengthen the state’s economy.

March 5, 2009

Libraries Receive Construction Grants

ALBANY, 03/04/09 -- Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) announced today that local community libraries in the 51st senatorial district have been awarded $421,032 in public library construction grant funds.

"Our libraries are vital to our communities, especially in these tough economic times" Seward said. "Local libraries are being counted on for so much more these days. Traditional book lending still accounts for a high volume of traffic, but more and more people are visiting libraries for other needs.”

March 4, 2009

Where's The Reform?

After years of promising fundamental reforms to ensure greater transparency and accountability, the new senate Democratic majority has actually taken New York’s notoriously flawed state budget process and made it fundamentally worse on every level.  In fact, this year’s budget process has been more closed, more secretive and more dysfunctional than ever before.

February 27, 2009

Governor's Ski Tax Falls Flat

WINDHAM, 02/20/09 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) and Assemblyman Peter Lopez (R/C/I-Schoharie) today called on the governor to eliminate his higher tax on ski areas.

“The budget proposed by Governor Paterson is filled with $6 billion in new taxes and fees that will strike at the heart of upstate New York businesses and families,” said Seward. “The additional 4 percent hike on ski lift tickets and lessons unfairly targets an industry already battling a tough economy.”

February 20, 2009

It's Not Too Late To Fix Health Insurance

When Governor Paterson’s deficit reduction package hit my desk one of the first things that jumped out at me was an increase in health insurance taxes.  I fought the ill conceived legislation, but senate Democrats were unwilling to budge, and passed the plan anyway.  Now I am calling on the governor to use funds from the federal stimulus package to rescind his hike in health insurance taxes and right a very serious wrong.

February 20, 2009

Budget Held Hostage To Politicians' Private Agendas

ONEONTA, 02/17/09 – With New York State facing a grave fiscal crisis, State Senators James L. Seward (R/C/I- Oneonta) and Joseph A. Griffo (R/C/I-Rome) today called for urgent, non-stop action to resolve the serious flaws in Governor David Paterson’s proposed 2009-2010 state budget.

February 17, 2009

Paying Back Our Troops

 The cost of a college education is high.  Every day college students and their parents wrestle with tuition bills, the cost of books and room and board.  Studies show that the expense is worth it.

Over time college graduates, on average, earn more than high school graduates. According to the Census Bureau, over an adult's working life, high school graduates earn an average of $1.2 million, associate's degree holders earn about $1.6 million, and bachelor's degree holders earn about $2.1 million.

February 13, 2009

Job Creation Needs To Be Focus Of Federal Stimulus

ALBANY, 02/10/09 – Senator James L. Seward (R/I/C-Oneonta) today commented on the federal stimulus package, and how it will be used once approved.

“As we deal with an economic crisis here in New York it is important that any federal stimulus dollars we receive are put to use creating and retaining jobs and strengthening our economy.

February 11, 2009

Local Roads, Economy At Risk

ONEONTA, 02/06/09 -- Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) says the governor’s budget plan will lead to unsafe roads and jeopardize long term transportation plans.

February 9, 2009

SUNY Students Unfairly Targeted

I am proud to represent several State University of New York (SUNY) schools and public community colleges throughout the 51st district.  The campuses have grown over the years and are considered among the finest educational institutions in America.  Students leave these schools with a first-class education, extraordinary job skills, and a keen perspective on life. 

February 6, 2009